On Monday, August 5th, 2019 the official ribbon cutting ceremony took place to celebrate the opening of the new Zero-G Chair Swings at the East Side Rec. The swing set was funded by the Saratoga Springs Friends of Recreation.
The new Zero-G Chair Swings allows children who require additional support to swing alongside their friends. This creates an inclusive environment of play parity where everyone can join in the fun. The swings will accommodate children ages 2-12 years old.
The Zero-G Chair Swings cost over $8,800 and include four Zero-G Chairs, the extension of the playground border, and new surfacing.
In 2015 the City of Saratoga Spring Recreation Commission launched the Playground Initiative with the vision to renovate the City’s outdated playgrounds. The mission of the Playground Initiative is to ensure that all residents in Saratoga Springs have access to a safe and engaging play space in their own neighborhoods. By building strong partnerships with the community, elected officials, and the Recreation Department, the Playground Initiative ensures that playgrounds are valued, protected, and improved citywide.
The Saratoga Springs City Council approved $300,000 from the Sub Division Recreation Fund to be in the 2016 Capital Budget to fix failing playgrounds. This initial funding has kick started the Playground Initiative giving it the support it needed to truly launch. The Recreation Commission continues to seek the additional funding needed to close the gap between the needs of our playgrounds and available funds.
In the Spring of 2016 the Recreation Department released its first Request for Proposal seeking plans for the design, purchase and installation of playground equipment for the East Side, West Side, North Side, and Veterans Memorial Parks. After several meetings and open public discussions the Commission selected Kompan Inc to renovate North Side Recreation Park for $75,000. The Renovation began in late October 2017 and after a little delay with Mother Nature the Park re-opened May 2, 2017.
Upon completion of the North Side Park, the Commission decided the West Side Rec was the next playground to be completed. The City awarded the project to Kompan to renovate the park for $220,000. Renovation on the Park started in Early September and the Park was re-opened on October 31, 2017 with a grand celebration.
In the Fall of 2017 work began on the East Side playground. Game Time was the chosen vendor for this renovation, and consisted of two new swing sets, a climbing structure, and borders. Cost for these renovations was $40,018, and was completed in the Spring of 2018.
As the Commission continues the Playground Initiative the task will become harder as finances will be difficult to secure. However, with strong leadership on board and continued community support success is inevitable.
Individuals interested in supporting the Playground Initiative should contact John at John.Hirliman@Saratoga-Springs.org